30 Days in Switzerland with my dog

30 Days in Switzerland with my dog

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Stephy
Stephy
8 posts
new member
Oct 8, 2017 - 8:27 AM

Hello Forum!

I would truly appreciate some expert advice for the planning of my itinerary in Switzerland from 20 November to 19 December. We are 2 adults and 1 Siberian husky (2 years old), and would be traveling around by public transport. With our dog with us, we would therefore prefer a relaxing and slow itinerary, make up of a mixture of sightings of the old towns, Christmas markets, nature walks and mountain hiking and ski.

Few questions that I would need to clarify first:

- If I were to put my husky (19kg) into a huge IKEA recycled bag and carried her onboard the trains, buses, boats, cable cars, do I still need to purchase a half adult fare ticket for her?

- I understand that dogs are allowed in most shopping malls and restaurants unless otherwise stated. How about supermarkets? If not allowed, can I similarly put her into the huge IKEA recycled bag and carried?

- Are we allowed to cross the borders to Milan and Venice with our dogs via train? If yes, based on where I am staying as below, which offers the best fastest route to Italy?

19 Nov - Arrive in Zurich. Train directly to Lucerne.

Stay in Centre Lucerne 7 nights

- Vet Visit

- Day Trip to Mount Titlis, Pilatus and/or Rigi - Which two of these are a must-visit? Are dogs allowed?

- Day Trip to Basel?

- What else can we do?

27 Nov - Train from Lucerne to Interlaken

Stay in Interlaken 7 nights

- Day Trip to Jungfrau Region

- Day Trip to Grindelwald

- Day Trip to Lauterbrunnen Valley

- Day Trip to Bern

- What else can we do?

4 Dec – Train & PostBus from Interlaken to Saas-Fee

Stay in Saas-Fee for 8 nights

- Day Trip to Zermatt & The Matterhorn

12 Dec - Train from Saas-Fee to Zurich

Stay in Zurich for 7 nights

Fly out of Zurich on Oct 29

- Vet Visit

- Lake Zurich

- Boat Trip to Stein am Rhein

- Christmas Market

Do you think this is doable - too many nights in one base or too much time on trains? Any feedback is appreciated. Also, what type of weather to expect? And, what type of rail pass should we get - Swiss Rail Pass Flex or GA Travel Pass, 15 Days will be sufficient?

Thank you so much in advance!

Stephy

Lucas
Lucas
4950 posts
expert &
moderator
Oct 8, 2017 - 9:00 AM in reply to Stephy

Hi Stephy and welcome to MySwissAlps!

Sounds like a nice long trip here - should be fun!

Your dog will have to pay regardless of whether it is in a pet carrier or bag etc. Does that work in Singapore? Only dogs that are 30cm or less from the shoulder blades are free in Swiss trains. Please see www.myswissalps.com/tr ain/practical/dogs.

Your dog is as far as I've seen allowed everywhere - Swiss love their dogs. Perhaps the supermarket it would be better to tie up outside though. I haven't seen them there before.

For ideas of what to do in Lucerne click here.

Interlaken is in the Jungfrau region so I'm not sure where you mean to go that day.

For ideas of what to do in the Jungfrau Region click here.

To get an idea of how to go from one town to another or planning day trips, use the Swiss railways timetable to plan everything out and see if the duration is too long for you personally.

For rail passes you are looking at a Swiss Travel Pass Flex (the GA is for residents only).
I think the STPF and a Swiss Half Fare Card combination may work best for you.

The only way to know the best rail pass for you is to plan out your trips you will make while here and do the math - on our web page: how to choose the best rail pass.

Last modified on Oct 8, 2017 - 1:39 PM by Arno
Stephy
Stephy
8 posts
new member
Oct 8, 2017 - 9:27 AM

Thank you so much for your speedy reply, Lucas!

Would you then know if we are allowed to cross the borders to Milan and Venice with our dogs on the train? If it's possible, would Lucerne or Interlaken be a fastest and convenient route to Italy?

Are dogs allowed on the boats and cable cars?

Lucas
Lucas
4950 posts
expert &
moderator
Oct 8, 2017 - 3:13 PM in reply to Stephy

I've never traveled with a pet in Switzerland before so I am not sure about the regulations.

They are allowed on trains and that leads me to believe they are fine on boats and cable cars as well (once you've bought a ticket). I've rarely seen dogs not allowed anywhere in Switzerland except some restaurants.

As for travel between countries with a pet I really don't know. Where did you find details on whether it is ok for you to bring your dog into Switzerland?

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4355 posts
expert
Oct 8, 2017 - 5:21 PM in reply to Stephy

Hi Stephie -

<<"If it's possible, would Lucerne or Interlaken be a fastest and convenient route to Italy?

Are dogs allowed on the boats and cable cars?">>

Indeed, I have seen dogs in restaurants, on trains, on boats and on cableways ( at least, the kind with a large cabin). Don't think it would work on a chair lift. ;-)

However, ALL of the dogs have been extremely well-behaved. In a restaurant, they get under the table and stay there. On a train, they stay at the feet of the owner or, on some trains, under the seat. They are quiet. They don't move around or bother other passengers. Ifyour dog does not have civilized Swiss manners, you will get some nasty looks, at a minimum.

How tall is your dog at the shoulder? 19kg is not extremely large, but you might well find that a dog that size occupies the space belonging to another passenger in some way. That could be a problem, especially on crowded trains. Many buses have a place near the center doors large enough to accomodate a wheel chair, sometimes bicycles. You could sit or stand ( for short distances) there to find space for your dog.

Since seating in some trains has two seats facing each other to make a set of four seats. The space betwen those four seat is for the legs and feet of four passengers. On a full train, that type of seating, which is not universal, could be an issue.

For long distance travel on trains, First Class will give everyone more space. And, the cars may well not be full.

Route Italy:

You can get to Italy from anywhere in Switzerland. ;-) To learn about the fastest routes, which can include passing through Luzern, Interlaken, or any other place, use the time table:

www.myswissalps.com/ti metable

If you wish to go through a certain city, enter it in the "via" box.

Enter your starting point in Switzerland and your destination in Italy. For Milano and onward to Venice various routes are convenient, depending on where you start. Common routes by train are via the Gotthard Pass ( easy from Zürich or Luzen, and via the Simlon from Brig, easy from Interlaken. The time table will give you the fastest route by default, and allows you to see the stops en route.

In order to visualize the geography, as you think about routes and alternatives, to help you understand the train routes and the relative locations of the cities, this map is very helpful:

map.search.ch/

Zoom in and you will see the train lines. Play with the menu entries under "Traffic."

Weather during your trip will not resemble Singapore!

Check out the links on these pages:

www.myswissalps.com/ab outswitzerland

Of the 3 mountains that you name near Luzern, Pilatus would have the least open spaces that your dog might enjoy. The Rigi is at lower altitude and has more fields/meadows and general openness. Walking the trails near the top of the Rigi and Rigi-Kaltbad could be nice, if there is no snow on the ground that might make the trails difficult.

Slowpoke

fredch
fredch
32 posts
active member
Oct 9, 2017 - 5:30 AM

Dogs in CH are products of obedience schools except farmer dogs. I have never seen one in a grocery store. Leads are parked at the door with some places furnishing water bowl there. At worst on a train, one can sit in the vestibule with room for a dog.

Dogs in CH are silent companions.

Lucas
Lucas
4950 posts
expert &
moderator
Oct 9, 2017 - 6:42 AM in reply to fredch

Yes, very true!

They hardly ever make a sound - its shocking when I hear a bark actually.
Obedience schools were mandatory in Switzerland until 2016 I believe (not sure why they changed it).

I thought it was a good idea, though at first I thought it rather invasive of the government to insist upon something like that when buying a dog.

maggiehorswell
maggiehorswell
530 posts
top member
Oct 9, 2017 - 10:02 AM

We have also noticed how beautifully behaved Swiss dogs are! Yet they are not in the least bit cowed or unresponsive - if their owners allow, they are happy to make friends! I didn't know about the obedience school requirement. Wish they had that here in UK! Might hear of fewer cases of dog attacks which are sadly all too often in the news.

Maggie

Stephy
Stephy
8 posts
new member
Oct 14, 2017 - 5:44 PM

Thank you all for your advices. Really appreciate them! =)

At this point, I am a little torn on where should I base next after my first stay in Lucerne. I can't decide between Interlaken or Wilderswil or Grindelwald, taking into consideration that I would like to walk my dog around Lauterbrunnen, Wengen and etc . Which would be a nicer place for dogs yet convenient for us to find restaurants and grocery? If it's Wilderswil, how do I get from Lucerne to Wilderswil? How do I also move around to visit Lauterbrunnen, Wengen and etc?

Thanks lots in advance.

Stephy
Stephy
8 posts
new member
Oct 14, 2017 - 6:38 PM

Oops! I forgot to enquire too on where should I stay in Zurich to visit the vet and fly out. We read that many people actually advice not to stay in Zurich, if not where else (don't think I wanna go back to my first base Lucerne)? How do I also get from Saas-Fee to Zurich?

Thanks lots once again.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4355 posts
expert
Oct 14, 2017 - 8:20 PM in reply to Stephy

Hi Stephy -

<<"How do I also move around to visit Lauterbrunnen, Wengen and etc?">>

For figuring out how to get around in Switzerland, use the time table that I linked in my earlier post. The map that I linked will help you visualize the locations.

Slowpoke

Alpenrose666
Alpenrose666
1860 posts
top member
Oct 15, 2017 - 3:18 AM in reply to Stephy

>> where should I stay in Zurich to visit the vet and fly out. We read that many people actually advice not to stay in Zurich

When people suggest not staying in Zürich, that is only because it has less to offer in the way of scenic beauty than other places such as Luzern or the Jungfrau Region. If you have a specific reason for staying in Zürich, such as visiting the vet, then there is no reason not to stay in Zürich. You can search for accommodation in Zürich on the page linked to below. Use a map to find out how conveniently located the hotel is before booking:

www.myswissalps.com/ac commodation

>> How do I also get from Saas-Fee to Zurich?

PostBus to Visp or Brig, then train to Zürich. You can use the Swiss Timetable for specific details. The bus stop in Saas-Fee is called "Saas-Fee, Busterminal".

Alpenrose

Last modified on Oct 15, 2017 - 3:23 AM by Alpenrose666

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